by Mark Piper | 12:25 pm

When I got my Roku media player, I opened the box and looked for the instructions. Well guess what, there aren’t any instructions, other than the obvious, how to hook it up. Hooking it up is super easy, you plug in the power cord, plug it into an electrical outlet. Then you plug in the HDMI cable into the box and plug the other end into your TV. WOW, what next, oh put batteries in the remote. As it boots up and comes to the main screen, you are like, okay now what?

Well getting started with Roku is very, very easy. Quite like getting a computer, just jump on and take on the adventure. Just start clicking icons and see what happens. Of course, the screen shows the main services, Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and many others, but you get the idea.

Netflix is the King

I truly believe that Netflix is the King. I have used my Roku streamer for coming up on three years now, and I use Netflix, close to as much as I use everything else combined. That is pretty bold, but I do use Netflix that much.

Netflix was the first streaming service to win a prime time Emmy Award. House of Cards became the first original online web only television series to receive major Emmy nominations in 2013. To date, Netflix has received 225 Emmy nominations, winning 43 of them.

Netflix has produced a number of good original TV shows, in addition to showing a number of major network TV shows. Something I like, I have watched some of my favorite TV shows from beginning to end on Netfliix. The new Hawaii 5-0, NCIS, the quirky hospital comedy, Scrubs and probably my favorite show, That 70*s Show are all shows that I have seen from beginning to end. Since I have seen them all, whenever I see them rerunning on TV, I skip right over them, because I know I have seen it, something I never did before.

Original Netflix Shows

There are several originally produced Netflix shows that I highly recommend. The nice thing about watching Netflix TV shows is, I don’t have to wait until next week to see the next episode. Some people may think that is not a nice thing, but I am a Netflix binge watcher. Anyway here is my first recommendation. I promise you will watch this show’s first season (ten episodes) in less than two weeks.

Ozark

The first season is an edge of your seat thriller. A lot of my Facebook friends watched it last year, judging from all the talk about it. Jason Bateman plays Chicago financial planner Marty Byrde, his wife Wendy Byrde, portrayed by Laura Linney, was a former public relations manager for former Illinois State Senator, Barack Obama, but quits to raise her two kids, a fifteen-year-old daughter, Charlotte (Sofia Hublitz) and a thirteen-year-old son, Jonah (Skylar Gaertner).

They are a relatively ordinary family from the Chicago suburb or Naperville, IL. Marty and his partner, Bruce are anything but ordinary! They launder money for the second largest Mexican drug cartel. Bruce shows Marty a brochure of Lake of the Ozarks, telling him it would be an easy place to launder loads of money.

Well, of course, things go wrong, Bruce and others are caught skimming 8 million dollars from the cartel and are killed for doing so. On a spur of the moment, Marty promises the cartel that he can replace the money Bruce stole and launder $500 million over five years at Lake of the Ozarks, in order to save his and his family’s lives.

So Marty and his family, hastily move lock, stock and barrel to the Midwest’s Summer Fun Time Jewel, Lake of the Ozarks, with the Cartel’s eight million dollars. Marty immediately goes looking for local businesses to invest in, while Wendy looks for a home to move into, leaving the kids at the motel watching the room so nothing gets stolen. The Byrdes encounter the local small-time criminal members of the Langmore family, of which, nineteen year old Ruth Langmore (Julia Garner) is a maid at the cheap roadside motel the Byrdes are staying at, and concocts a way with her cousin Wyatt Langmore (Charlie Tahan) to get the Byrdes two kids away from the motel! Ruth steals a big chunk of the eight million and goes off with other Langmore family members to divvy up the money. Risking his life, Marty confronts them and gets the money back, after explaining how his family and all the Langmores will be killed by the cartel, if he does not get it back.

Well let us meet more of the characters. Rachel Garrison (Jordana Spiro) is the owner/operator of the Bluecat Hotel and Bar, which is a typical little resort at Lake of the Ozarks, with rustic cabins, a small marina to buy gas, bait, etc. She is the first person Marty becomes a business partner with. Marty drops the price of gas on the water, offers specials in the restaurant/bar, and remodels the rooms/cabins. Rachel is thrilled with the increase in business, Marty has created and the money he is putting into her little resort, until, she sees some of the faked receipts and realizes that Marty is laundering money.

Jacob Snell (Peter Mullan) is the local drug lord in the area. He isn’t a big fan of Lake of the Ozarks! When the lake was created in the late 20’s, early 30’s, his family’s property was flooded, including many family graves. The family had to relocate and start over, farming rocky soil. After some time, the Snell family discovered that about the only thing they could grow in the poor soil was poppies. They would sell the flowers to local people and tourists and oh yea they could produce heroin. The Snells see Marty as a huge nuisance to their large operation, as he unknowingly interferes with their money laundering and their distribution of heroin

Russ Langmore (Marc Menchaca) is Ruth’s uncle and Wyatt’s father, the instigator of the Langmores who creates a lot of Marty’s problems with the Langmore family.

Camino Del Rio (Esai Morales) is the cold-blooded crime lord for the Mexican drug cartel, who has his people watching every move Marty makes and reports back to him.

There are many more characters to this story, but this gives you all you need to binge watch Ozark.

There is More Where This Came From

Ozark is an extremely entertaining show to watch. Sometimes, while I was watching the first season, I would think “Wow that is really twisted.” But that is the show, it is what kept me watching all ten episodes of season one. I watched all ten in less than two weeks. It is a thriller, enjoy!

If you have any comments or questions for me, please leave them below and I will get back to you.

All the best,

Mark Piper

mark@bethmark.com

Comments

Miranda

I remember when I got my roku my mom and I were googling how to install it because we had no clue! Took us a little bit, this article would have been helpful at the time lol. Other people will need the help too!

Oct 05.2018 | 01:44 pm

    admin

    Thanks for the comment. I have really only begun to find things on Roku I never dreamed I would see. Check back to see new posts, as I will be going in depth. Thanks again!

    Oct 10.2018 | 04:50 am

Andy

Hey Mark great post! A load of my friends have watched Ozark and have raved about it and I now feel like I am missing out so I will have to get it watched.

Oct 17.2018 | 11:44 am

    Mark Piper

    By all means, watch Ozark, it is really good. I will be coming out with other shows I recommend, I am working on doing a post on Stranger Things, which an is an edge of your seater. Thanks for the comments, I really do appreciate it!

    Oct 18.2018 | 04:52 am

Courtney Hunt

I bought a ROKU many years ago since then I’ve started using Amazon Fire devices for my streaming needs. The ROKU was pretty limited back then as to what content was available. I wonder if my old device still works. Do you think I may need to update the firmware?

Regards
Court

Oct 17.2018 | 12:09 pm

    Mark Piper

    I am not sure about amazon, but I would think it is the same as Roku. The Roku updates itself, whenever one is available, you might need to go into your settings to see if your Fire does automatic updates, or at the very least you should be able to update yourself and by all means, do update it. I plan on getting an Amazon Fire, but that is still a little down the road. Thanks for checking out my post and commenting, I really do appreciate it.

    Oct 18.2018 | 04:47 am

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